South Dakota bees kill dog, sting police officers multiple times

STURGIS, S.D. (AP) — Bees held in a commercial beehive in Sturgis killed a dog and stung several people including police officers Friday evening, according to authorities.

Officials responded to a report after the keeper tried to add more bees to the hive, the Rapid City Journal reported. The beekeeper’s dog was near the hive and was attacked by the German and Brazilian honey bees.

“The bees got more upset because the people were trying to get them off by spraying water on the dog,” Sturgis Police Chief Geody VanDewater said.

Officers and people from the Sturgis Volunteer Fire Department who arrived on the scene were chased blocks away after they were overcome by the stinging insects, VanDewater said. He was among officers pierced multiple times, and one officer received 47 stings, he said.

The city used an emergency notification system to warn residents to stay inside their homes because of the bees. Authorities cordoned off an eight-block area, and a relative of the beekeeper came and worked to get the bees into the hive.

After more than an hour, the city sent out a second notification that the bee problem was resolved. VanDewater said he’s uncertain about regulations against beekeeping within the city’s borders.


Information from: Rapid City Journal

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